Objectives: To test whether the submandibular/sublingual (SMSL) salivary secretion, mucin concentration and candida carriage status were altered in human immunodeficiency virus-positive (HIV+) patients. Subjects and methods: SMSL saliva collected from 48 HIV-infected and 31 HIV-negative men were analyzed for flow rates, total protein and mucin concentrations. Salivary cultures were performed for Candida assessment. Results: The salivary flow rate and protein secretion of the HIV+ patients was 37% and 32% less than that of the controls (P < 0.0001, P = 0.0087). The mucin concentrations (MG1 and MG2) were higher in the HIV+ subjects compared with controls (P = 0.0186, P = 0.0014); however, the mucin secretions were not different. The frequency of Candida-positive cultures was higher in the HIV+ subjects than in the controls (61.4%vs 24.1%, P = 0.0018). In the HIV-infected group, the unstimulated SMSL flow rates were lower in Candida-positive than in Candida-negative patients (P = 0.0158). Conclusion: The salivary secretion of the SMSL glands was reduced in HIV infection. Although the mucin concentration increased in HIV+ subjects, mucin secretion was not altered. Highly active antiviral therapy had no effect on salivary function. We found an association between the level of candida carriage and salivary flow rate in HIV-infected patients.
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